When online dating, creating your profile can be a major source of stress. You want to present an accurate version of yourself and be able to represent your own unique personality.

There’s no doubt that your profile photos play an important role in online dating success. Your pictures will be viewed before your profile is read, and lackluster photos can cause a potential match to pass you over. That’s why it’s so important to choose photos that reflect who you are and draw people in to read your entire bio. Use the following tips when picking which pictures to share.

1. Don’t Leave Your Profile Photo Blank

This may seem obvious considering the topic of the post, but many people are hesitant to really put themselves out there by sharing pictures. People will think you have something to hide if you don’t share pictures. More than likely, they’ll scroll right by without reading your profile. If you don’t have any existing photos you feel comfortable sharing, ask a friend to help you out by snapping a few new pictures for your profile.

2. Be Honest

Represent who you who truly are and put recent pictures up, especially for your main profile photo. Don’t try to hide anything, as you want to find people who like you for you. For example, if you’re bald and only post photos with hats on, you aren’t being your authentic self. People will realize that you’re hiding something. Celebrate yourself and show the world who you are.

3. Select Multiple Photos

Posting several photos allows you to showcase different aspects of who you are, but be careful not to get too carried away when selecting photos. Negative photos tend to stand out more than positive ones. If you post 15 photos, and just one of them is unflattering, that picture will be more memorable than the other 14 in the group. Also, having too many photos increases the time people spend scrolling through them and takes away from your profile text. Stick to three to five photos to offer variety without going overboard.

4. Avoid Group Photos

The focus of your profile is you, not your friends. If you really want to include others, only have one group shot at most, and don’t make it your main photo.

5. Showcase What’s Important To You

Your pictures should capture your personality and what you hold dear. Your photos should also be a reflection of your interests.  If you are an animal person, include a photo with your dog or cat. If you value your ability to travel and explore new places, share some of your favorite vacation shots. You want people to understand who you are as a result of looking at your pictures.

6. Show Off Your Personality

A study by Tracy and Beall (2011) demonstrated that women were more attracted to men displaying pride in their photos (head tilted up, shoulders back and an expanded stance/chest). Men were more attracted to women displaying happiness (big smile).

7. Represent Your Emotions

Data from Wake Forest University suggests that you should present the left side of your face in photos as it is more emotive (Blackburn & Schirillo, 2012). A picture from that angle may be more expressive than a shot taken head on.

Remember that your pictures are just one aspect of your profile. You should be open and honest in your text as well. Be sure that your photos demonstrates who you are and the type of person you want to attract. This will help others learn more about you, and in turn, enable you to select better potential matches.

You may also be interested in 6 Ways To Give Your JDate Profile A Virtual Makeover



Tracy, J. L., & Beall, A. T. (2011). Happy guys finish last: The impact of emotion expressions on sexual attraction. Emotion11(6), 1379.

Blackburn, K., & Schirillo, J. (2012). Emotive hemispheric differences measured in real-life portraits using pupil diameter and subjective aesthetic preferences. Experimental Brain Research219(4), 447-455.

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